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tv   CNN Newsroom  CNN  November 23, 2012 11:00am-1:00pm PST

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all right, so is this the end of hostess? we'll get answers from hostess ceo greg rayburn, joining us live at this time on monday. if your family is making you crazy this holiday season, we'll have some tips on how to stay sane and, you know, keep the harmony in the household. that's tomorrow on cnn starting at noon. please join me for that. thanks so much for joining me this hour. i'm fredricka whitfield. "cnn newsroom" continues with victor blackwell. thank you, fred. i'm victor blackwell in for brooke baldwin. the dow finishing in the green as shoppers empty the shelves across the u.s. in case you're curious, the stock market closing early on this black friday. find out what today's sales mean for the overall health of the economy. but first, mass protests are erupting in egypt after a sudden power grab. in cairo's tahrir square,
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thousands are chanting for regime change. they say egypt's new president is acting like a dictator. president mohamed morsi granted himself sweeping new powers yesterday, basically morsi now has absolute power for six months. his opponents say he's acting like a new pharaoh. the u.s. state department is calling for calm and encouraging all parties to work together. morsi declared all his laws, all his decrees are final and cannot be overturned or appealed until egypt's new constitution is put in place. just days ago, people around the world were praising morsi for his pivotal role in negotiating the israel/hamas cease-fire. today, protesters set fire to a symbol of morsi's power, the muslim brotherhood headquarters in alexandria, egypt. morsi supporters clashed with protesters there. morsi is defending his new powers, saying he's not taking sides and the steps he took are meant to achieve political and social stability. reza sayah joins us live in
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cairo. reza, is morsi's government strong enough, so early in this administration, to withstand this level of protests? >> reporter: well, we're going to find out in the coming weeks, but the political landscape is certainly in his favor. he's got the backing of police and security forces, but make no mistake, these are demonstrators, protesters that are determined and energized. many say one of the outcomes of the 2011 revolution was that many egyptians lost their fear and inhibition to protests and speak up. in other words, from now on, if they don't like something, they're not going to be afraid to speak up and say it and that's what we're seeing today, thousands of angry demonstrators filing into tahrir square and other egyptian cities, aiming their anger at mr. morsi, seems very similar to last year, of course. last year the anger was aimed at mr. mubarak. the demonstrators managed to topple him. today, victor, very similar slogans and chants, chants of
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leave, leave, leave, chants of we won't leave until this government leaves. the same things, the same things we heard last year and now it looks like these demonstrators, just like 2011, are going to do a sit-in. they're putting up stents, look for this to continue for the coming hours. maybe through the weekend, victor. >> we take this a step further now, reza. the only reason that mohamed morsi was able to take power was because he was elected after the people of egypt decided they were done with centralized power with the mubarak government. why do you think he took this step? what motivated this power grab? >> reporter: well, he won't describe it as a power grab. his opponents are describing it as a power grab. but his position, the muslim brotherhood, which is his movement, their position is they want to move along the democratic process that has been bogged down, the drafting of the constitution that is bogged down. he came out today in a speech that says i'm with the
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revolution, i'm a protector of the revolution. of course, his opponents gathered in tahrir square today, vehemently disagree, describing this as the undermining of the principles of the revolution, victor. >> is there any sense that indeed when the new parliament takes place, or is seated rather, and the constitution is ratified, that he will give up these absolute powers? >> reporter: well, that's what he says he's going to do. but many of his opponents are very skeptical. and in the meantime, his opponents say there is going to be a lot of problems, even if he gives up his powers six months from now. those problems are focused on this panel, this constitutional panel that is charged with drafting the new constitution that's being dominated by islamist supporters of mr. morsi. many liberals, many women's rights groups, many christians have quit that panel in protest and moving forward, the way this panel stands, his opponents say
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any constitution is going to be drafted, is going to favor mr. morsi and his muslim brotherhood followers. that's another reason why they're protesting today. >> and give us an idea of some of the more controversial decisions he's made since taking office that can now not be questioned, not be overturned, that the protesters in tahrir square have the greatest problem with. >> reporter: well, i think, first and foremost, it's this constitutional assembly. and, again, it is a panel that is dominated by islamists. it is supposed to be -- it was advertised in one that is representative of all factions. manufactu many of the factions who sparked the revolution, the liberals, western style liberals, christians, youth groups, women's rights groups, they don't believe that this panel is representative of what this revolution is about. and this is a decision he's made and sticking to it and one of the decrees is pushing through the draft of the constitution,
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even with some of these opposing factions quitting in protest. >> reza sayah, in cairo for us, thank you. today is the mad rush. and some people are just outright mad. rushing to start the holiday shopping season. black friday, the day that a lot of retailers go into the black or become profitable for the year. now if we're not among the shoppers lining up early for bargains, we're among those watching. watching seasons like this, some of us are looking at the wild and crazy moments. >> i will stab one of you [ bleep ]. >> okay. others watch for the lines to calm down so they know it's safe to go into the mall. there is a bigger reason to watch black friday crowds. they're a bellwether of the economic recovery. consumers drive 70% of america's economy and some of the big
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stores start third black friday sales earlier than ever, on thanksgiving evening. some before the sun went down. and it looks like it might be paying off. lots of lines outside of stores last night and this morning. black friday was good for the stock market, you see green arrows, that's a good thing. walmart and target gained more than 1% and helped push the dow up 173 points to end the day above the 13,000 mark. todd marks is senior editor with "consumer reports" magazine in yonkers, new york. consumer reports wrapped up the holiday poll of consumers optimism. >> americans are inherently optimistic, even in the darkest of times. and people don't hold that the presidential election or the state of the economy is going to keep them down this year. you can tell that because they're out and about this weekend. about a third of americans will be shopping this black friday at the brick and mortar stores.
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but another third actually, 34% slightly more than those at stores will be shopping online this weekend. and if that's not enough, you know, this whole notion of cybermonday, this concocted holiday where people go back to work and look for something to do and they shop, well, actually, we found that as many people are going to be making purchases online on cybermonday, as they are on black friday. there is a lot of optimism out there. even though 37% of americans told us they'll be spending a little less this year, they're going to be out and spending something. >> are we going back to the days of the big ticket gifts, these television purchases, and the expensive electronics and if we are, what does that tell us about the health of the economy? >> well, what we see and this has been the trend, now this is the fifth christmas season in a row where we have been battered by bad economic news, even if things are getting better, people still have it on their mind.
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and people have basically decided to be much more conservative in what they're buying. there is a focus on the practical. the biggest gifts this year in terms of quantity will be clothing. the second most wanted gift turned out to be gift cards followed by toys, but nearly 40% of americans plan to give cash or check this year. now, of course, electronics are popular. they always are, because they're kind of the gee whiz gadgets and people are looking to buy things like the ipod mini, you know, and the new iphone 5, things like that. and they're always popular and they are buying them, but, again, our data shows that, you know, practical gifts are up front and center. and we have seen that now for several years. >> i was out with folks until probably 2:30 this morning doing a little black friday shopping and you couldn't tell by the line there was any concern about the economy. todd marks, thanks very much. as shoppers head to the stores, unions are taking on walmart and some workers are
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my money. my choice. my meineke. protesters greeted shoppers at some walmart stores around the country. but that's not stopping the retail giant from touting its best black friday ever. walmart says about 22 million people took advantage of the store's thursday evening opening. snatching up almost 5,000 items per second. walmart says in a press release, only 26 protests occurred at stores last night. we estimate less than 50 associates participated in the protest nationwide. exactly who are these protesters. cnn's renee morris ventured into one of the bigger protests this morning outside a walmart in landover hills, maryland. >> reporter: just take a look, you can see how many people are out here. i would estimate it is in the hundreds and they're all chanting. some of them wearing signs, some of them holding signs that say
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that the wages just aren't where they should be. now, within this mix of people, we know there are union members. we know there are community members. have not bumped into a employee of this particular walmart at this point. i did speak to someone from walmart and they tell me that they have had two call-ins but not sure if it is at all linked to the folks here. i want to give you a look live and look at the signs, respect your workers, walmart, is one sign they're wearing there. and then i'm told, ma'am, are you an employee? you are an employee of this walmart? >> i am a worker from laurel, maryland, 1985 store. >> reporter: so you are. did you walk out today? >> yes, i did. we're both on strike. she's also a worker. and walmart and laurel 1985. we're here to support our brothers and sisters across the united states in our walmart stores, our walmart warehouses and more.
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we do want retaliation to stop. >> reporter: when you walked out today, did you walk out in fear that you would lose your job? >> i'm going to leave that to god. in our country we have federal rights and under federal rights we are protected. so i hope there will be no more retaliation when i go back to our stores tomorrow. because we are returning to work tomorrow. >> reporter: as far as i can tell, the majority of people i've seen or that i've spoken to, they're members of unions, they are people within the community that sympathize with the workers with walmart, but the majority of the people that you're seeing here, at least from the people i've been able to speak to, they are not specifically walmart workers. >> all right, renee morris reporting for us there. thank you. we have the thanksgiving leftovers in the fridge. we probably had them for breakfast, maybe lunch now. but it's already time to talk about christmas at the white house. first lady michelle obama was presented with the official
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white house christmas tree. >> it's a go. good. we can have christmas now. >> thank you so much. >> daughter sasha and malia gave the 19 footer from north carolina the onceover. michelle obama gives it thumbs up, says we'll take it. meanwhile, the oregon state university men's basketball team got the presidential treatment this thanksgiving. president obama seen here joking with the team. first lady invited the team and her brother, who is the coach to have dinner with the family. just ahead, two women fired after a picture surfaces on facebook. one of them is flipping the bird during a trip to the tomb of the unknowns. is this fair? we're on the case. plus, two people dead and a dozen in serious condition. did you see this? a tragic pileup involving 100
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dense early morning fog is being blamed for a huge pileup that killed two people and closed a texas interstate for
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hours on thanksgiving day. look at this. more than 100 cars and trucks were involved in this chain reaction, just crash after crash, 80 to 100 people were sent to hospitals. a texas couple, grandparents in their 60s, were killed when an 18 wheeler crushed their car and their son is heart broken. >> we love them, and it's terrible, terrible. my dad and i, we work together. we had a good relationship. and we had -- we got to spend time together golfing and fishing and i'm so i thankful for that now. >> on thanksgiving day. this all happened on interstate 10 near beaumont, texas. it took about nine hours to remove the mangled cars and the debris. state troopers are interviewing the drivers and the passengers and a few witnesses as part of their investigation. listen, we keep warning you about what you post on facebook. and here's why you should
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listen. look at this photo. this is lindsey stone. she was on a company trip to arlington national cemetery when she posed for this picture. yeah, that's her making an obscene gesture next to a sign that asks for respect. and she uploaded the picture to her facebook page and the reaction was swift. more than 30,000 people signed a petition to have her fired. a company she worked for responded and she got the boot. midwin charles is on the case. midwin, i know there will be gal issues coming out of this. it just -- there is going to be something filed. >> hi, victor, how are you? thanks so much for having me. i think this case is very interesting. one thing that people fail to realize when you look at all of the furor over this is that employment is at will, which means employers can fire employees for any reason. at least, of course, if you're a contractual employee, just as an employee can quit for whatever reason it is that they want. so, yes this woman can
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potentially file a lawsuit against her employer for firing her but i can't see how that's going to be successful. >> she is remorseful. i want to read part of the apology she issued to a newspaper in boston. here is the quote. we never meant any disrespect to any of the people nationwide who served this country and defended our freedom so valiantly. in an internet world when thousands demand you lose your job. are there protects of free speech here. there are a lot of people who don't like what she did, but she may say, i'm an american, i have the right to say what i like. >> she does. and the company has the right to fire her. remember, its employment at will. also, a lot of companies ask their employees to comport themselves in a particular manner of respect, and in a manner that kind of espouses the views of that company. she was on a company trip when she did this. so the employer does have the right to react in this manner.
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and, of course, as i said before, she can sue them. i don't know how -- what the likelihood of success will be if she does so. >> we heard from the woman who is in the photograph, i want to read you something that came from the company. stone's former employer, nonprofit that serves adults that have disabilities. released the statement on their facebook page. here is the quote. we wish to announce that the two employees recently involved in the arlington cemetery incident are no longer employees of life. again, we deeply regret any disrespect to any members of the military and their families. the incident and the publicity has been very upsetting to the learning disabled population we serve. they fire the woman in the picture. they also fired the person who took the photograph. is there any legal recourse for that person? >> there is always legal recourse. as attorney, we always acknowledge the fact that people can sue. it is just a matter of whether or not they'll be successful. i think that what they did was a direct contravention of what the
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company stands for. that's what made it a little egregious. least on the part of the company. >> before you click post, before you click send, think about what you're doing. midwin charles, thank you so much. >> thanks for having me. a newspaper shocks the world by calling for gays to be killed. so what do the people of uganda say? we find out next. ♪ you can stay in and like something... ♪ [ car alarm deactivates ] ♪ ...or you can get out there with your family and actually like something. ♪ the lexus december to remember sales event is on, offering some of our best values of the year. this is the pursuit of perfection.
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homosexuality. some of the other offenses under the bill, if you know someone who is gay, you have to turn them in to police. if you house a gay person, that would be punishable. touching a gay person with the intention of committing a homosexual act also punishable. a straight ugandan could be held accountable for those offenses. and as cnn's david mckenzie first reported a couple of years ago, this is all part of the culture in you gauuganda where newspaper goes so far as to say homosexuals should be hanged. >> reporter: this is the paper in question. it doesn't have much circulation, it is a new paper. but 100 pictures of uganda's top homosexuals. and it basically asks for these people to be hanged and called out on the members of the public to find these people. inside the pages of the newspaper they even have photographs of people that, you know, show their names, say
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where you can find them and, you know, also give the addresses. so this really shocks people around the world that a newspaper, that generally protects the public, can say that you people should go out and target members of the public. this is in the ugandan context. i want to play a few sound bites from people that we spoke to and we ask them, should gay people be allowed to live and work in uganda? do you mind if we ask you a few questions. do you think gay people have a place in uganda? >> i don't think so. there is a law against gays in the constitution, so definitely they don't have a place in uganda. >> certainly not. >> reporter: why? >> our law doesn't require them to happily engage in their activities. >> reporter: right. >> that's it.
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and that is our standard. our culture, our traditional culture, has no room for gays. and besides that, when we honor the christian values, which have been obtained by the nation, then certainly there is no room for gays. >> reporter: hi. i'm david from cnn. we are just chatting to people. just take 20 seconds. we're trying to find out what ugandans think on this issue, because a lot of people are talking about it. what do you think is the space for gay people in uganda? should they have a place? >> i don't know. >> reporter: okay. do gay people have a place in uganda? >> yeah. you see, gay is how one feels. you have a right over your body. it is your own right.
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>> reporter: should gay people have a place in uganda? >> gay people? i don't think so. no. how can a gay person have -- i don't think it's right. i don't think it's right. >> reporter: what should happen to someone who is openly gay in uganda? >> i really don't -- you know, it's -- it is inconceivable. >> david mckenzie, thank you for that. now, as you saw, cnn blurred the face of the man you saw in the story. as you can imagine, it is not safe to publicly support homosexuality in uganda. but its anti-gay bill is condemned by western leaders like president obama who threaten to cut off aid to uganda if the country does not do more to protect the rights of gay people. again that bill could pass any day. the truth between israel and hamas militants in gaza could be in trouble right now.
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there was an incident on the border. you'll hear what happened when israeli troops confronted a group of palestinians. rates side by side so you get the same coverage, often for less. that's one smart board. what else does it do, reverse gravity? [ laughs ] [ laughs ] [ whooshing ] tell me about it. why am i not going anywhere? you don't believe hard enough. a smarter way to shop around. now that's progressive. call or click today. [ grunting ]
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the fragile truth between israel and hamas faces a serious new test right now. israeli troops started shooting in a buffer zone along the border with gaza. and according to hamas, one palestinian man was killed, 25 others were wounded. hamas claims the victims were farmers trying to check their land near the zone. israeli officials say they were attempting to breach a fence that divides gaza and israel. also, we have this just in, concerning the man credited with brokering that cease-fire, egypt's president mohamed morsi. well, the u.s. state department just released a statement concerning those demonstrations erupting in egypt today against morsi. those demonstrations claim that -- the demonstrators claim morsi is making a power grab.
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cnn's jill dougherty is at the state department. what is in this statement? >> reporter: victor, there is concern and the united states is making it clear that they're watching this very closely, that there is concern by this -- about this move by president morsi, and as you can hear in this statement, what they want to know is exactly what it means because after all, this is very soon after president morsi was brokering or actually bringing together the elements for a cease-fire in gaza. his reputation was very high, and now this. so here is what the state department is saying. the decisions and declarations announced on november 22nd raised concerns for -- concern for many egyptians and for the international community. one of the aspirations of the revolution was to ensure the power would be -- would not be overly concentrated in the hands of any one person or institution. and that, in fact, is the state
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department says that when secretary of state hillary clinton in fact was in cairo, she was meeting with president morsi, she was talking about this constitution, which is in the process of being written, and she was urging president morsi to make it inclusive, both for women and for religious minorities, et cetera. the united states is pointing out that right now there is what they're calling a constitutional vacuum and that is obviously what president morsi has filled, that constitutional vacuum. but the question is how long will that go on. the u.s. is stressing basic rights, things as they say, fundamental freedoms, individual rights, and the rule of law. they are not, the united states is not trying to dictate what precisely should go into that constitution. that would embroil the united states in something that obviously it doesn't want to get embroiled in. but they are urging them to make sure that they have these
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universal rights, let's say, or the rule of law, which would be very important. number one that is peaceful and number two that it include all of the groups in egypt that should be involved in putting this together. >> and this puts the secretary in a pretty precarious position because just two days ago, she was praising and congratulating president morsi for his work in brokering this cease-fire. does this change the fundamental very fragile relationship between the u.s. and egypt in the immediate sense? >> reporter: the second part of your question i think, victor, is hard to answer. it depends how this is interpreted, what president morsi is trying to do. is it really, as he would argue, to protect the constitutional process, a temporary move, or is it something more, let's say, long lasting. that remains to be seen. but certainly the united states never felt that this was an easy path, or that any of this was
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guaranteed. they went into it and out of it very soberly. >> all right, jill dougherty at the state department for us, thank you. is it an island of safety in the middle east? ahead, two children both victims of the conflict between israel and gaza, and a twist of fate, are treated at the same hospital. to practice math more? i love math! but two ipads means two data plans? that's crazy. maybe not. with at&t mobile share, adding an ipad is just $10 a month. but honestly, mom and dad's love is all i really need. we should keep these for us. we should keep these. what?! [ male announcer ] at&t mobile share. add an ipad for just $10 a month. one plan. up to 10 devices. at&t. rethink possible.
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and check out the preventive benefits you get after the health care law. ♪ open enrollment ends december 7th. so now's the time. visit or call 1-800-medicare. less than 48 hours into a very fragile cease-fire between israel and hamas, a deadly shooting. one young palestinian killed, and many more wounded in a buffer zone near the israeli/gaza border and while the sides remain divided, a week of fighting also saw an unlikely coming together. cnn's sara sidner found proof in a tel aviv hospital. >> reporter: 4-year-old joseph is listening to an age old bed time story, but he's not at home safe in his bed, he's in the hospital, a victim of an age old conflict that has shattered his family life. he and his parents were staying
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inside this apartment building in southern israel when a rocket from gaza slammed into it. the blast sheered off several of joseph's tiny fingers, badly injured his father, and took his mother's life. she was among the first to die on the israel side of the border. he was saying, my mother is not here. she's with god. he knows it will be a hard time, his grandmother says. hard is putting it mildly. he has just been through a second surgery, doctors at the sheba medical center reattached four of his fingers. but in the end, they had to ream pew trade two of them. he lives in the south and there are rockets all the time in that area. hamas doesn't think about where the rockets are going, she says. while joseph is being treated here, one room away there is another child with the same kind of war injuries. except she's from the other side of the conflict. she's from gaza.
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she lost three fingers when the war came to her home. i heard the sound of the missile that hit, i didn't even have time to ask what happened, and then the second one hit, she says. when the dust cleared, she could see the bones of her child's fingers in small pieces on the floor. she was taken to the hospital in gaza, but it was too crowded and they couldn't give her the best care. so the family asked israel for permission to cross the border. initially her mother was terrified, terrified at the prospect of people considered an enemy in their country putting their hands on her wounded daughter. it is a strange situation, and it is my first time entering israel. i was afraid. but they treated me and my daughter in a very nice way and i understand that medicine has nothing to do with politics, she says. >> all the tension is blocked outside the hospital. here there is an island of sanity. in this stormy water of the middle east, here we treat
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people, we don't actually look from where they are and what they do and what they did before coming here and what they're going to do after leaving us. >> reporter: the doctor is treating both children. >> it will never be normal. it will affect her life from now on. and his life from now on. in the choice of profession, in the choice of a future partner for life, everything. >> reporter: she has worked in this tel aviv hospital her entire career. treating everyone from soldiers to suicide bombers and the civilians in between. >> what is it in this piece of land that everybody is fighting about all the time? this is what comes to my mind. whether this is our lot for eternity from now on. always have the injured on both sides, always fighting, what's the point? >> reporter: if there is a point, it is lost on a 4-year-old boy and 8-year-old girl from either side of the israel/gaza border, who just want to be children.
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but now share a similar fate. their innocence interrupted by a war they had nothing to do with. sara sidner, cnn, tel aviv. coming up, the pope is challenging some christmas beliefs, including when jesus was born. and who was present at the time of his birth. got a lot of people talking. we'll break it down next.
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just in time for christmas, a new book about jesus debunks a few myths about his birth. for example, it says there were no cattle or singing angels present when jesus was born. it also questions jesus' birth date. now, this isn't from just any person who is writing on the topic. the book was written by pope benedict xvi. it is getting a lot of attention. eric maripotti isco--editor of
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cnn's belief blog. >> he's going through the texts and the gospel of luke where it lays out this narrative of jesus' birth story. he picked out three specific instances, the date, the animals and the angels and he's gone through and corrected some of the traditions. for example, on the date, he says that the timing where jesus' birth where it is determined as year zero where we have before christ and after, he said that date is probably wrong and made by a monk. the date is probably much earlier if you look at the other sources. let's look at something else, the animals. you talk about the oxes, this is upsetting to some kids who are supposed to play the ox or the sheep in the christmas pageant this year at church. >> it was disappointing. i was a lamb in the first grade nativity play and i feel like i wasted my time now. >> maybe not just quite yet. let's look at this passage from the gospel of luke here. it says mary and she gave birth to her first born son, and she, there is mary, and wrapped him in bands of cloths and laid him
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in a manger because there was no place for them in the inn. of course, we know mary and joseph go to bethlehem for the census, there is no room, so they go to this stable. and the pope talks about in the book that the manger is the place where the animals ate. he says there is an inplift reference to animals in that part of the story, but not an explicit reference. you can't make the jump that there were animals present at the birth. of course, later on in the story we know there are shepherds, which is probably why you played a sheep in your christmas pageant because down the line the angels come and talk to the shepherds. the thinking is they may have brought those sheep with them to the manger scene. >> so let's talk more about the afternoon angels because there are so many carols about the angels singing. and maybe the issue is with the singing here specifically. >> again, when we get to that t textual criticism, one thing that is important, he says, in the story it says the angels
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said to the shepherds, instead of the angels sang to the shepherds. so there he's parsing out that word, and saying, while tradition has said they sang to them, and that what they said glory to god in the highest and all that made it into lots of carols and songs, the text says they only said it to the shepherds, so there the pope is saying, look, that's part of the tradition there that they sang, but it really -- the text says they just said it. so really we should focus on what they said instead of whether or not they were saying it or singing it. >> all right. eric, we now sing hark the herald angels said. thank you very much. >> you got it, victor. up next, children having children, the often repeated cycle, offers little hope for the young parents. now a woman helps teenage moms. we'll meet this cnn hero next.
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columbia, it is a nation why nearly one in five teenage girls is pregnant or already a mother. and it is here we find one of our top ten cnn heroes. catalina escobar spends her days carving out brighter futures for these young moms and their children. she joins me now via skype from bogota, colombia. catalina, welcome. >> thank you. >> first, can you paint a picture for us of what life is like for these young mothers and these pregnant teenagers in colombia and how your group is helping them? >> well, first of all, we recruit the girls from extreme poverty. these girls come from families
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that are really, really in the base of the pyramid. and the only thing they do is expect whatever happens to their life, their mothers have been teenagers, pregnant teenagers, and their grandmothers as well. actually i met grandmothers of 20 years old. so whatever they have in life, it is become pregnant. >> what are their prospects? i imagine it is difficult to -- to move up the social stratus to get a better job, to provide for your children, when your children are pregnant and you're 28 and a grandmother. >> the problem is when a girl gets pregnant, she will drop out of school immediately. and that's a fact and it is an equation. and the next year she's going to get pregnant again of a different man. so what we do is really get them out of there and give them studies, they graduate from high
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school, we provide them with education in college or technical schools as well as giving them productive workshops. for us it is so very important to empower them so they can become productive because it is the only way for them to break that cycle of poverty. >> this started with your story. tell us about how you were introduced to all of this, your personal story. >> well, my second son passed away. he fell from an eighth floor when he was 14 months old. i'm married to a cartagenaa an we lived there for years. it is a beautiful city but it is surrounded by misery. i describe cartagena as latin somalia. it is unbelievable the poverty here. you cannot live in cartagena or
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come around and not see the poverty or see the slums. it is so attached to you. so i decided to work in a public hospital and before my son passed away, i saw how baby died because her mom -- her teenage mom raise like around $60 to save this life. so four days later my son died and i just associated both incidents that, for me, a baby or my son wouldn't die for money. it died because of an accident, but there was so -- a lot of moms around the city going through a process of grief because they didn't have the money. so 11 years ago i decided to take this leap, just saving lives wasn't good enough. what we found out was that 30% of all pregnancies in the city
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were from girls between 12 and 18 years of age. so that became a real issue. teenage pregnancy and infant mortality rates are two basic concepts. >> catalina escobar doing great work for the mothers who wouldn't have a way to care for themselves and their children and break this cycle as you call it. again, thank you very much. and you at home can now vote for your favorite among the top ten cnn heroes for 2012. go to, cast your ballot. the winner will be announced and all ten heroes honored live on december 2nd at our cnn heroes all-star tribute hosted by anderson cooper. top of the hour, i'm victor blackwell in for brooke baldwin. mass protests are erupting in egypt after a sudden power grab.
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that's what mohamed morsi's opponents would say, in cairo's tahrir square. thousands are chanting for regime change saying morsi is acting like a dictator. he granted himself sweeping new powers yesterday, basically morsi now has absolute power for six months. his opponents say he's acting like a new pharaoh. the u.s. state department is calling for calm and encouraging all parties to work together. morsi declared all his laws, all the decrees are final and cannot be overturned or appealed until egypt's new constitution is put in place. now, today, protesters set fire to a symbol of morsi's power, the muslim brotherhood headquarters in alexandria, egypt. morsi supporters clashed with protesters there. and morsi is defending his new powers. he says he's not taking sides and the steps he took are meant to achieve political and social stability. reza sayah joins us live in cairo. reza, is morsi's government
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strong enough to withstand the level of protests? because they're huge. >> reporter: yeah. victor, before we get to that, we're going to bring you up to speed with new information that we have. there has been another clash right below us, under our hotel balcony, where we believe protesters have set fire to a police vehicle. you can't see the police vehicle, but you can certainly see the thick black plume of smoke that is going into the air. behind that smoke is the nile river. tahrir square, where these demonstrations are taking place, are a couple of blocks away from us. throughout the day, there have been clashes in artery streets that lead into tahrir square. this is one of them, right below us, to the hotel we're staying at and what happened about 30 minutes ago, we heard some commotion, people rushing to the scene, they targeted a police vehicle, they set it on fire, what happened next was security
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forces came by, shot warning shots in the air, tear gas and the protesters dispersed. these are the types of clashes we have seen throughout the days, angry demonstrators continue to voice their outrage against mr. morsi after these controversial decrees that he announced last night, victor, does he have the power to withstand these protesters? certainly the political landscape is in his favor, the security forces certainly back him. but these types of scenes will probably concern him if they last in the coming days. these are protesters, victor, determined to make their voices heard. >> reza this is reminiscent of what we saw during the arab spring and the ousting of mubarak. is it enough for the protesters that if mohamed morsi would reverse his assertions or do they want him out all together?
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>> reporter: tharl caey're callr his ouster all together. the same call they made in 2007 of the ouster of mubarak, you're hearing the same demands again. you would think maybe if mr. morsi reverses his decisions, maybe that would placate these demonstrators. but i don't see mr. morsi doing that. that would be a sign of weakness, certainly not 24 hours after he made those announcements, and we should also tell you that earlier today he came out and defended his position. he said he's the defender of the revolution, he supports the principles of the revolution, and for now, he's sticking by his decisions. >> now that we see as you report that car burning in tahrir square below you, are we seeing any response of force from the government, from police, in tahrir square? >> reporter: well, what we're seeing when it comes to the response are warning shots in the air, lots of tear gas. we're on the 14th floor right
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now. and we can feel the effects of the tear gas where we are. so you can imagine what is happening down there in the streets, down there in tahrir square. you canee s more p gathering. they're tryi to find out what happened. again this is a police vehicle. it pulled up 40 minutes ago, right in front of the hotel we were staying at, a couple of blocks away from tahrir square. in came some protesters, they apparently surrounded the car, set it on fire. there was a lot of commotion. then in came skwuecurity forces police officers, firing tear gas into the air. crowd dispersed and now the fire department is on the scene trying to put this fire out, victor. >> reza sayah, thank you for that. we'll check back. what a difference 48 hours makes. just days ago, people around the world were praising mo hoing mo morsi for negotiating the pivotal role in the cease-fire.
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what happened? paula newton joins us now. paula, why does he think this is the right time to assert this, especially after this meeting he just had with secretary of state clinton? >> despite what went on in terms of him brokering this peace deal, look, mohamed morsi has a tall order on his hands, even if he had the complete support of the majority of the country, this would be a tall order. instead, he needs to really bring together desperate groups of people and right now the people that are in tahrir square do not believe he's going to be everything that they wanted from the revolution, and that means a complete departure from the regimes that come before. it is very clear, this is a power grab. what is more? he's saying, trust me, something very difficult to do, trust me, this will be over as soon as we have a constitution. i want you to hear now from mohammeded morsi, himself, what said. >> i said before and i repeat again i would never use legislation against individuals, parties, men, women, or muslims or christians for personal gains
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and to settle scores. >> when people in the street are saying this is what we fought for? people died in tahrir square so we could have somebody that was no better than the last? look, there was a reason that president obama at the time, when he said, look, egypt is nor an ally or an enemy, very cautious despite what happened. this was a pleasant surprise he actually had the leverage to broker that deal. does not change, though what is going on in egypt at this moment. it is a good reminder for people too, this is a guy educated at the university of southern california. he has the western sensibility, but make no mistake, his allegiance is to islamist party. people that are far more krad cal than he is, but he also has many liberals saying he's the new pharaoh. this will continue to go on and when you don't have that outlet of a parliament, a constitution to go to and vent and have all those debates, there is going to be a lot of frustration in the streets. you'll see that, i'm sure, for months to come. >> christiane amanpour said said
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short sentence, israel made a deal with an islamist government and now it appears that mohamed morsi may have gotten peace for another country, but losing it at home. we'll continue to follow the live pictures here this is tahrir square, reza sayah is there live in cairo, as he is reporting that a police car pulled up and was set on fire. you've got the protesters there who are just downright angry at these assertions that president morsi has made saying that his decisions, his decrees, his decisions over the past few months cannot be overturned until there is a new constitution, the new parliament, paula newton, thank you very much. back here at home, shoppers head to the stores, unions are taking on walmart, and some workers are walking off the job. plus, the real story behind the resignation of jesse jackson jr. and what happens to the investigation -- into the
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here's something you may not know. mexico's official name is united mexican states. and the idea of dumping the words united states from is name is getting a lot of support south of the border. rafael romo joins me now. >> you never say i'm going on vacation to the united mexican states, right? it is only people who work in the diplomacy, maybe an ambassador who has to deal with official documents, where the official name is only used. but the reality is that everybody in the world knows mexico as mexico, and the mexican president, the incumbent mexican president, who, by the way, only has a few more days in office, the new president takes office on december 1st, one of the things he wants to do and maybe part of his legacy. >> here is the big question. why? >> well, what the president says is that when mexico took the
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name officially as the united mexican states in 1824, the united states had only been an independent country for a few decades. and mexican leaders of independence back then were very much admirers of what happened in the united states. that's way before -- two decades before the mexican-american war, the relations between mexico and the united states were good and it was a way to emulate, try to emulate what happened here in the united states. but president calderon says that no longer applies, we're in a different world now and the reality is that nobody really knows mexico as the united mexican states. >> if the politics in mexico move at the pace of politics in the u.s., he has a few days left. what is the likelihood this is going to happen? >> that's the big question. i don't really know that the new mexican congress with the issues of security, the economy, it is really going to dpofocus on thi right away. the new president takes office on december 1st. i don't know this is going to be
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one of his priorities. but i think president calderon still wanted to make sure that at least it went through so they can consider it. now, you ask regular mexicans on the street, most of them don't even know that that's the official name of the country. >> yeah. i'm just -- i'm amazed that this is the -- the last few days, let's change the name. >> right. >> rafael romo, thank you very much. illinois congressman jesse jackson jr. never campaigned for re-election, but he still won by a landslide this month. despite being under investigation by the fbi and the house ethics committee. now, jackson has resigned, citing concerns for his health, but his resignation does not come without questions including about the allegations of possible misuse of campaign funds. chicago sun times washington bureau chief lynn sweet joins me from chicago. good to have you with us. >> thank you. >> lynn, first, can you tell us if we know any more about what exacerbated the health problem back in june?
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because it seems look a lot of the variables, a lot of the root causes had been in place for some time before june. >> well, you know, there were investigations of him, there is another figure that was a player in the overall broader investigation of former now imprisoned governor rod blagojevich that had pled guilty to a charge at about the time that jesse jackson jr. was started being absent and eventually checked into mayo. so we don't know exactly when he knew about this second criminal probe, the one dealing with his campaign finances, but it was just a -- it is the -- when he went into treatment for his mental health, we do know that it is after being under extreme pressure for years dealing with his personal problems and even though he had a political triumph in march, he beat a primary challenger, you know, that triumph obviously was not
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even close to being enough to deal with the personal demons he was wrestling with. >> there are two investigations, the fbi investigation and the house ethics investigation. now that he resigned, what happens to those? >> well, i believe, and i don't know this for sure, but it looks like the house ethics panel might just stop its work. they had never issued a final report that -- that that investigation stops for a few years during the height of the blagojevich trial and retrial. what we're waiting for now is this washington-based probe, the one dealing with campaign finances, and we learned for the first time in the resignation statement from jackson that he was cooperating with the authorities, acknowledged it for the first time, and his lawyers said in another statement that these talks will be going on probably for months. >> and he also acknowledged some mistakes in saying those
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mistakes were his own. i want to read something, your words, actually, from the sun times, published this week. you say i always sensed his agony was that he could never get out ofhe shadow of his father, and then you go on to say a few graphs later, i was struck that almost every job he had had was because he was his father's son. you covered the jackson family for some time. what is your sense of reverend jackson's sentiment about this? does he feel some guilt, some responsibility for this problem, for the resignation? >> i would use the word pain and anguish as any parent would when a child has such a downfall, not only the career ended, but he has severe mental health problems, he has been diagnosed as having bipolar and depression, so i think the pain is what is at issue now for reverend jackson, not the blame.
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one of the things i also say in that column is that growing up for now former congressman jackson, having a name jesse jackson has been his blessing and his curse. it opened doors for him. but he also had to live, you know, knowing he wasn't as self-made as his father, the two-time presidential candidate, and internationally famous civil rights leader. >> all right, lynn sweet with the chicago sun times. of course, more to come on this. thank you so much. >> thanks. think the competition among black friday shoppers is tough? it is nothing compared to the battles between online retailers and brick and mortar stores for your holiday dollars. up next, why old-fashioned retailers have a new reason to worry. what starts with adding a friend... ♪ ♪ ...could end with adding a close friend.
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protesters calling for better pay and benefits greeted shoppers at walmart stores around the can countku country . walmart says protests were held at only a handful of stores and only a few dozen workers took part. and it says about 22 million people shopped thursday evening and snatched up almost 5,000
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items per second. many of the protests were organized by a union-backed group called our walmart. a union representative would not say how many people in this landover hills, maryland, protest, were walmart workers. love to shop? hate the crowds? join the club. ibm reports online shopping is up 17% over last year. and now online retailer amazon is upping its game with an eye toward offering same day delivery. but there is a trade-off. dan simon looks at what all this means for you and your local stores. >> reporter: online versus brick and mortar. the battle for your holiday dollars perhaps has never been so intense. for years, internet merchants like amazon had a key advantage in states like california. no sales tax. local bookstores already under pressure by the rapid rise of ebooks and large bookstore ch n
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chains feel flar lparticularly squeezed. >> if you can save 10%, why wouldn't you? >> reporter: amazon's tax advantage recently disappeared in california adding 7% to 10% to the cost of each order. it also began taxing this year in other states like pennsylvania and texas. online retailers collect tax only for states where they have a physical presence. now here in california, amazon is building two giant warehouses. including this one near los angeles. it is a million square feet, and for the old-fashioned retailers, it is another reason to worry. why? because amazon's goal is to get items to customers faster and to be able to offer same day delivery. that's right. you can avoid stores if you want, and have a package delivered to your house in a matter of hours. a win for consumers, but tough for local retailers. >> if amazon creates distribution centers, and facilities on their turf locally, that takes away the one
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advantage we see retailers have left to compete against amazon. so it is a big deal. >> reporter: internet analyst colin sebastian says that means retailers need to up their game. >> retailers need to take a lesson from amazon. they need to focus on the consumer experience. they need to become more sophisticated both offline and online. >> reporter: those who want a lesson on how to thrive could learn from books inc. >> we had almost everything that came down the pike that could flatten an industry. >> reporter: amidst a tidal wave of change in the industry, michael tucker's dozen stores are thriving. >> everybody can get the books. but the staffs that we have really -- and the readers we have that are working with the public, that's the difference, that's the different factor we have, tremendous staff that are engaged with those communities. >> reporter: a basic reminder to all retailers internet and otherwise that good customer service could be the decisive factor in winning over business. >> thank you.
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>> reporter: dan simon, cnn, san francisco. the truce between israel and hamas facing a tough test today with reports of a deadly shooting. hamas claims israeli troops opened fire killing one palestinian and wounding others. the latest from the region is next. [ male announcer ] are you considering a new medicare plan?
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we can help. call unitedhealthcare to learn about medicare plans that may be right for you. call now. ♪ back to the middle east, where a two-day old cease-fire between israel and hamas is being tested. hamas says the bloodshed is continuing. a young palestinian was shot to death today, 25 others wounded. cnn's sara sidner reports the two sides disagree over how this started near the gaza border. >> reporter: an incident on the israeli/gaza border that has some worried that the cease-fire may not hold for long. here is what we're hearing from both sides of the fence. health ministry is gaza is saying one person was killed, 25 people injured when israeli soldiers opened fire on farmers in that area east of conunis.
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but there are different stories, there are groups of men foresting, coming close to the fence, trying to enter israel. they say the soldiers fired a warning shot in the air, but when they did not heed the warning, they fired toward the mens' legs. so far the israeli military has not confirmed the death or injuries, but they are investigating. the reason why this is such an incident is because incidents like these happen often, on and off over the past months. we have seen them ourselves. however, because it is happening now and we're talking about 48 hours after this very fragile cease-fire was agreed to, one of the conditions was that there would be no aggression from either side. now, we're hearing only from the palestinian authority at this point in time, and they're saying that this action by israel did break that cease-fire, however, we're not hearing that from hamas, which is in control in gaza, or israel. people are hoping on both sides of the border, the civilians who have been going through the stressful time who have been
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dealing with injuries, been dealing with the sirens, also in gaza, dealing with the death and the terrible maiming, that some of these air strikes and rockets have had, hoping that the cease-fire holds for some time, but ultimately people here want to see a permanent solution. and that, they do not have a great deal of faith that that will happen anytime soon. victor? >> sara sidner, thank you. protesters livid after a pregnant woman dies because she's denied an abortion. >> our bodies, our lives. >> now her husband is telling cnn the truth about what his wife -- her death being covered up. more? i love math! but two ipads means two data plans? that's crazy. maybe not. with at&t mobile share, adding an ipad is just $10 a month. but honestly, mom and dad's love is all i really need. we should keep these for us. we should keep these. what?!
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the taliban is claiming responsibility for a fatal car bombing near kabul today. three people were killed, 90 others injured. among them, women and children. the taliban says the attack was
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in retaliation for the execution of four taliban members. well, scenes like this one are breaking out across europe. look. >> never again. >> people there are protesting ireland's strict abortion laws and it all started when one woman showed up at a hospital, begging for an abortion. for three days she suffered in agony, doctors refusing to remove the fetus that would slowly kill her. cnn's nic robertson sat down with her grieving husband who has some serious accusations about the circumstances surrounding her death. >> reporter: he has lost his wife, and now fears the truth behind her tragic death may be lost too. >> some key information is missing. >> reporter: praveen met in india, married and set up home in ireland four years ago. he is an engineer.
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she was a dentist. they were happy here. >> she loved dancing. she forced me to dance with her on a couple of times on the stage, when she gave her performance. and that will be the fondest memories, i suppose, you know. i always had stage fear. and the belief she gave me. it was unbelievable. >> reporter: together, they had dreams of a beautiful future, of children, their children, of having a family. >> she was looking forward, basically you know. in a way she found that, you know, she's at the right place, you know, that's the reason she knew and she was very well organized as well, you know? she knew what she wanted in life. that's the reason why she decided to settle here long-term. >> reporter: when she became pregnant, they were overjoyed.
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then their ordeal began. she got back pain. here doctors told her she was miscarrying. her baby would likely die. her husband says they asked for a termination, were told this say catholic country, not when a fetus is alive. >> we requested for a termination, we wanted to go home and think about the next pregnancy because it was a planned pregnancy, we were so happy, we wanted to have babies. >> reporter: three days after the request, the fetus died, was removed. four days later, she was dead from a blood infection. >> our bodies, our lives. >> reporter: ireland has been outraged. protests in support of savitah, not just here, but across the world, have urged the country's politicians to update abortion laws, prevent similar tragedies.
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there has been political fallout too. abortion is a hot button issue in ireland. the prime minister is under pressure to get an inquiry. government steps so far have done little to inspire not just because they took weeks before announcing an inquiry, but when they did, three of the seven medical professionals on the investigation team were from the same hospital here, where his wife died. though they have now been replaced, other issues remain. not the least of which the missing medical records. records the hospital declined our request to comment on. >> basically request for termination and there is no notes for a request at all in any of the medical notes. and also there is -- the response from the doctor is not in the medical notes either.
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>> reporter: what do you think has happened to it? >> we don't know. and it is just claimed there is all of the information in there, and when we requested for a cup of tea and toast and, you know, things like an extra blanket was given, all that is in the medical notes. >> reporter: he says he will settle for nothing less than a full public inquiry. whether health service, not just his wife's death, is investigated. >> every single family person asked me how could this happen in the country, like ireland, in the 21st century, because it was just so simple. when they knew that the baby was not going to survive, why wait? think about the bigger life, which is the mother, my wife, and they didn't. >> reporter: all he wants, he says, is the truth. nic robertson, cnn, ireland.
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>> back here in the u.s., as folks on thanksgiving break head to movies or concerts, there is a pretty good chance they'll be going to see baby boomers. we're looking at how and why these stars are not going anywhere. >> who calls it quits will be the public, not us. when they say we had enough of you, we'll disappear gracefully, you know? ♪ ♪two of a kind ♪for your information ♪we're two of a kind ♪two of a kind ♪it's my observation ♪we're two of a kind ♪like peas in a pod ♪and birds of a feather ♪alone or together you'll find ♪that we are two-oo-oo, oo-oo-oo, oo-oo-oo, of a kind♪ [ male announcer ] a european-inspired suspension,
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but it's not from germany. ♪ a powerful, fuel-efficient engine, but it's not from japan. ♪ it's a car like no other... from a place like nother. introducing the all-w 2013hevrolet malibu, our greatest malibu ever. ♪ um, my mom's car and a cheetah. okay. a spaceship. a spaceship. and what's slow? my grandma's slow. would you like it better if she was fast? i bet she would like it if she was fast. hm, maybe give her some turbo boosters. tape a cheetah to her back. tape a cheetah to her back? seems like you have thought about this before. [ male announcer ] it's not complicated. faster is better. and the iphone 5 downloads fastest on at&t 4g. ♪
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you know, one job or the other.
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the moment i could access the retirement plan, i just became firm about it -- you know, it's like it just hits you fast. you know, you start thinking about what's really important here. ♪ you know, they say some things get better with age. wine, cheese, and hollywood stars. cnn's nischelle turner takes a look at hollywood's baby boomers. >> reporter: just try counting
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the stars born between 1946 and 1964. ♪ that's hollywood, baby. booming with entertainers who decades after they debuted are still delivering the goods to the 80 million americans aged 48 to 66 who first made them famous. >> the baby boomers did change everything. they created the me generation, the youth generation, but guess what, when you hold on to that power economically and in the press, you don't let go just because you're 60. you keep it going. ♪ >> reporter: witness, the rolling stones. the brits' first rock bobby soccers kids when they hit the states in the mid'60s. now the kids are in their mid-60s. the band members are pushing their 70s. when they announced their tour last month, they sold out american arenas in minutes. >> who will call it quits will
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be the public, not us. when they said we had enough of you, we'll disappear gracefully. ♪ >> reporter: the idea that hollywood glamour equals youth, that's old thinking. just ask bonover jovi's richey sambora. >> i feel younger and better now than i did in my 20s. i feel more involved in life. >> reporter: being of a certain age is no longer bad for business, says "more" magazine's editor in chief. >> you got a serious financial problem with the millennials. you have to wake up and say let's see who's got the money to go to the movies. it is people who have some economic power and not just the 20 somethings. >> reporter: proving that, cruise, keaton, weaver, field, the bruces, springsteen and willis, meryl, maran, bette, baldwin, been around for decades, with a fan base still paying to see their new
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projects. >> they're still doing the top movies, still doing the top broadway shows, they're creating new series, they're reinventing themselves at the top of their game. >> reporter: and inspiring their cohorts. >> look at the rolling stones. if they're any benchmark. >> 50 years when we started there haven't been bands 50 years. now if you're if a band, we could be like that. there is already a role model for that. >> reporter: nischelle turner, cnn, hollywood. >> still rocking. a monumental lesson in rejection and persistence goes on the auction block next week in london. i'm talking about audition tape, rejected by a record executive, who said guitar groups are on the way out. that rejected guitar group turned out to be the beatles and we all know how that worked out. now, 50 years after what's been called the biggest blunder in music history, a copy of the beatles decca audition tape surfaced. listen closely to this report
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from cnn's phil hawn. ♪ i saw a girl in my dreams ♪ >> reporter: they were four unknown guys in 1962. john, paul, george and pete. trying to break into the music business by making this audition tape. they handed decca records their demo which included this song "three cool cats." ♪ three cool cats three cool cats ♪ >> reporter: but the group was rejected by the record company and told they had no future in show business. that groups like theirs were on the way out. ♪ three cool cats >> reporter: boy, were they wrong. >> it is like you're sitting in -- in a cinema when you have headphones on. it is brilliant. and that's the most amazing part about this tape is the quality. >> reporter: the beatles recorded a total of ten songs on the demo, listing all of them on this handwritten tape cover. songs including money, crying,
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waiting, hoping and this one, searching. ♪ searching yeah, searching ♪ ♪ searching >> reporter: this is the first time the audition tape is being heard in public and it could be yours. >> anyone who spends over $20,000 on it, it is going to be, you know, they're going to be telling everybody on the planet they own it. so it is a trophy. >> reporter: but if you can't afford the price tag and are a beatles fan, at least now you know how it all began. phil hawn, cnn, london. a bizarre twist in the mysterious murder of an iranian student in texas. now a close friend of the student is also found dead. we're on the case next.
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and now that bizarre new twist in a houston murder case we have been following. it started ten months ago with the murder of an iranian born
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medical student. the murder of galera remains unsolved. police say there are few clues. they know she was an outspoken critic of human rights abuses in iran. she was gunned down in her car as she drove home. but get this, now her boyfriend's twin brother has been murdered. the body of cody beaver was found in his home riddled with bullets. attorney midwin charles is on this case. you know this case. your hunch, is this a really rare unbelievable coincidence? or should police really be looking for a connection here? >> i don't think it's a coincidence. i mean, i think the correlation between the two families just begs the question there must be a connection here. and as you've said in this intro, this young man's wife as well as he were recent converts from christianity from islam.
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which begs the question whether or not this was somehow politically motivated. but i want to point out her brother had given a press conference in which he said he didn't believe at least her murder was politically motivate. >> all right. i want to play for you a statement from the friend of the iranian student and then we'll talk on the other side. >> everybody starts thinking and they say, okay, maybe it's connected because they knew each other. this was one at his apartment and my friend was killed behind her home. so there must be some motive behind all of this. >> what do we make of this student -- the outspokenness as it related to the iranian government and this happening and the police kind of saying maybe there's nothing here. do you think there could be some relation to that? >> well, it sounds as though there is. and i certainly hope that the police are doing the best that they can to investigate that further. i mean, this woman was bright, she was sharp, a medical student, outspoken with respect
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to her critique on human rights abuses by the iranian government. so that almost begs the question particularly since her death was so violent and clear that she was the intended target as well as her boyfriend's twin brother. so it almost begs the question after all, what else would it be, victor? >> let's talk also about the religious element, her conversion from islam to christianity. >> right. >> could that have some role here? >> it could. unfortunately, given the role that she played in being outspoken, she was the co-founder of an organization that was really outspoken in criticizing the iranian government. the fact she converted from islam to christianity, it could open that window of criticism from those who thought that that was not the appropriate thing to do. >> still a lot of questions. and we hope to get some answers. midwin charles, thank you for that. >> you're welcome. the fight to stay clean and
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sober, one man found a way for himself and thousands of other recovering addicts to stay clean. find out how when you meet this cnn hero. that's coming up next. e been so. and some difficult ones. but, through it all, we've persevered, supporting some of the biggest ideas in modern history. so why should our anniversary matter to you? because for 200 years, we've been helping ideas move from ambition to achievement. and the next great idea could be yours. ♪ we find the best, sweetest craforelobste that we can find. [ malennounc ] it'ti focrabfestt red lobster! his ar, y 1 of 5ntrees
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the thanksgiving leftovers are still in the fridge, a lot turning turkey into turkey salad today. but it's time to talk about christmas at the white house. first lady michelle obama was presented with the official white house christmas tree. >> we'll take it. >> daughter sasha and malia and michelle obama giving it a thumb's up. and the oregon state university men's basketball team got the thanksgiving treat this evening. this is a picture of the president with the team joking around. the first lady invited the team and her brother, who's the coach, to dinner with the family. well, after beating his addiction to drugs and alcohol, scott strode turned to sports to fill the void left behind. and what worked for scott is now helping thousands of others stay
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sober while experiencing a healthy high. scott is one of cnn's top heroes for 2012. scott, it's good to have you with us. >> thanks for having me, victor. >> we know this starts with a very difficult period for you. you hit rock bottom. tell us your story. >> well, i started using at a pretty young age. i had a lot of emotional pain and stuff in my childhood and led me to drinking and drugs pretty early in my adolescence. and i used pretty hard until i was about 24 until i finally got sober. >> how did you turn that into getting off drugs and turning to sports to fill that void? >> you know, when i got sober i started doing different activities. i started climbing, i started in the boxing gym. and every time i climbed a mountain or had the courage to get in the ring for the first time, it just started to shift my self-esteem. so after a bunch of years sober,
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i thought how do we give this to other people? i saw a lot of people in recovery being stuck in isolation. a lot of fear about the relapse. so i thought let's take them in the mountains and see what happens. >> and what happened? >> it's just so transformative. anyone who's crossed the finish line or stood on top of a mountain knows it changes something in your heart. and i think for folks in recovery it's just a really profound experience. a lot of us get into that because we have a trauma history and other stuff. so we decide to kind of quiet that noise by picking up a drink. and this is just a way for us to rebuild our self-esteem and new identity through sport. >> and what's it been like to watch people change to go from that addiction to feeling the high of achieving something that they otherwise did not think they could? >> it's been amazing. when we first started phoenix, we had a handful of people come through, you know, the first year about 87 people. and now we've served about 7,000
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people. so to see all those folks think that they can just do whatever they put their mind to, that transfers over and becomes part of their recovery as well. it's really special. >> clearly you were nominated by someone who knows your work is that special. and what's it feel like? what did it feel like when you found out you were a cnn hero finalist? >> i was really touched and moved by that. you know, i think that cnn to tell the story -- the hopeful story of recovery is something pretty special. i think often when we see substance abuse in the media, it's pretty negative. it's when people are falling from grace. and the truth is recovery works. and there's a lot of people out there living sober full lives. and it's great that cnn is featuring that. >> and your message i'm sure to people who are struggling with addiction is that it is possible. >> yeah. it is possible to get clean. and it is possible to have a full life after addiction.
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you know, whether it's drugs or behavioral addiction, whatever it is, there's hope out there. there's a lot of us out there living sober. if you're struggling out there right now, we're here for you. you can reach out to us. >> all right. scott strode, thank you very much. vote now for your favorite among the top ten cnn heroes for 2012. go to cast your ballot. the winner will be announced and all ten winners honored live on december 2nd. before we go, dense early morning fog is being blamed for that huge pile-up that killed two people and closed a texas interstate for hours on thanksgiving day. we learned that more than 100 cars and trucks were involved in this chain-reaction crash. look at this. 80 to 100 people were sent to hospitals. again, this is thanksgiving day. a texas couple, grandparents in their 60s, they were killed when an 18-wheeler crashed into their car. their son as you'd ima
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